Sen. Rounds: ‘More Questions Than Answers’ for FBI Raid on Trump’s Florida Home

Sen. Rounds: 'More Questions Than Answers' for FBI Raid on Trump's Florida Home Sen. Rounds: 'More Questions Than Answers' for FBI Raid on Trump's Florida Home Sen. Mike Rounds arrives for a closed luncheon meeting in the Hart Senate Building on Capitol Hill on September 24, 2020 in Washington, DC. Senate Republicans plan to vote to nominate a new Supreme Court Justice before the end of the year. (Liz Lynch/Getty Images)

By Fran Beyer | Sunday, 14 August 2022 10:40 AM EDT

Sen. Mike Rounds, R-S.D., on Sunday said the FBI raid of Mar-a-Lago brings up questions of its justification.

In an interview on NBC News’ “Meet The Press,” Rounds said the Aug. 8 raid on the home of former President Donald Trump to scoop up classified documents comes as it “appears” a president can classify and de-classify such material.

“There will be a question about whether or not they did exhaust, as Attorney General [Merrick] Garland said, all other means to do this rather than making this unprecedented move on the home of a former president,” Rounds said.

“Attorney General Garland really does have a responsibility not just to take accountability for it, but to share with the American people why they did this,” Rounds said. “We still have more questions than we have answers.”

The Senator said releasing the affidavit for the raid “would help.”

“At least that would confirm that there was justification for this raid.,” he said.

“This is also a case of where we're going to have more questions as they continue to develop as they look through the information, the material that they have garnered at Mar-a-Lago. Perhaps they will share some of what their concern was, they'll share a little bit about the reason for going in and doing it this way.”

According to Rounds, it may be constitutional for a president to classify and de-classify material, noting it’s never been tested in court.

“It would be good for the Justice Department to release some of the information about the extraordinary steps or the steps they did take to try to cooperate with the former president,” he said. “I also think this will bring into question one constitutional issue that has not been talked about — and that is whether or not a president can declassify or classify certain items.”

“It never really has been litigated, but it appears a president can classify or perhaps declassify information,” he asserted. “And if that's the case, then the question would be, and I think it will be litigated as this moves forward.”

Rounds said most Republicans, however, want to focus on the here and now — inflation, and that Democrats merely want to distract voters’ attention from that.

“The folks in Fort Pierce, South Dakota, are talking about why gas prices are still high, what the cost of hamburger is, they're talking about why in the world we want to have 87,000 new bureaucrats in the IRS out chasing down and trying to audit them,” he said.

“I think Democrats would prefer not to have right now,” he said.

“If they could get [Trump] to announce right now in the race, they would love to have that because that would take all the air out of the atmosphere."

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